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FILE PHOTO: A forensic personnel from the Tunisian police works at the site where a suspected Islamist militant was arrested after wounding two policemen in a knife attack near the parliament building in Tunis, Tunisia November 1, 2017. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi


TUNIS (Reuters) - A Tunisian police officer who was stabbed by a suspected Islamist died of his wounds on Thursday, a national security spokesman said.

The suspect, named as Zied Gharbi, was arrested on Wednesday after two policemen were wounded with a knife near the parliament. He shouted "Allahu Akbar" - God is greatest - as he stabbed the policeman in the neck, witness and officials said.

The attack was close to the Bardo museum where 21 people, mostly European tourists, were killed in an attack by gunmen in March 2015.

Tunisia suffered two other major attacks that year, one against tourists at the beach resort of Sousse and the other against presidential guards in the capital.

"Our colleague Riadh Barrouta died Thursday after the terrorist attack in Bardo yesterday," Walid Hkima, a national security spokesman, said.

The attacker was 25 and from Ettadamen, one of the largest, poorest suburbs of Tunis.

The Interior Ministry said Wednesday's attacker had confessed that "he had adopted Takfiri thought three years ago and believes that killing security forces is a form of jihad".

"Takfiri thought" refers to a view that Muslims should proclaim other Muslims to be infidels and justify attacks against them.

Zied Gharbi has no ties with Islamist groups, but he had been influenced by hard-line ideology on the Internet, officials said.

"Initial investigations showed that this terrorist does not belong to any terrorist organization, he had not received orders from any group," Hkima said.

The 2015 attacks severely damaged the economy of the North African country, where tourists visiting its Mediterranean are a significant source of revenue. Since then, security has been boosted and authorities have cracked down on militants, dismantling dozens of cells.

(Reporting By Tarek Amara; Editing by Larry King)

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